The Calgary Flames’ 2022–23 is basically one Darryl Sutter and Brad Treliving press conference from being officially wrapped up. Despite expecting them to speak at locker room clean out day, it ended up being players only while the two of them had other work to tend to. Now, as the Stanley Cup Playoffs are about to get underway, we wanted to know which division might be the eventual winners of the Cup. We asked, you answered.
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Even representation for each division
As noted in the tweet, this is the first time in seven seasons that the each division will consist of four teams each. The wild card spots typically end up having at least one division with five teams—more often it’d be the Central Division or Metropolitan Division with extra playoff teams.
Now, this season has New York Islanders and Florida Panthers taking up the wild card spots in the Eastern Conference and the Seattle Kraken and Winnipeg Jets taking the West. With that said, which division seems poised to have the best Cup odds?
The matchup rundown
In the Eastern Conference, all four matchups are divisional. This isn’t the case in the West however as both wild card teams are slotted to face teams from the other division. We’ll quickly recap the matchups and then take a quick look at some Cup odd predictions.
The Atlantic Division leads the way
Based on the poll results, the Atlantic seems heavily favoured. This poll isn’t indicative of overall league sentiments by any means, but there’s still a large discrepancy pushing away from 25% odds for each division.
The Atlantic is represented by the outright dominant Boston Bruins who will face the Florida Panthers, and the Toronto Maple Leafs are facing off against the Tampa Bay Lightning.
The Metropolitan Division is also more favoured
Interestingly, the Metropolitan Division was the next highest voted, making it seem like the Cup is destined to end up in the Eastern Conference this year.
The Metro has the Carolina Hurricanes facing off against the New York Islanders, as well as the New Jersey Devils against the New York Rangers.
The Pacific can lead for the West
With about 20% of the votes, the Pacific Division beats out the Central for most favoured Western Conference team.
The Pacific will see the Vegas Golden Knights face off against the Winnipeg Jets, while the Edmonton Oilers have a first round rematch against the Los Angeles Kings.
The Central had the lowest turnout
In the microcosm of the poll results, the Central received the fewest votes with less than 10%, which could be interesting since the reigning Cup champions hail from this division.
The Colorado Avalanche are set to face the Seattle Kraken in their first trip to the postseason, and the Dallas Stars will face the Minnesota Wild.
Let’s turn to a couple of popular models to see which divisions they the Cup winner coming from.
Micah Black McCurdy’s model has the two Atlantic teams as the most likely Cup winners with the Bruins and Lightning taking the two top spots.
MoneyPuck has an different team winning the Cup as they have the Oilers and Avalanche with the top two probabilities, citing that the path to the Cup is easier for them compared to the Bruins.
Dom Luszczyszyn released a new visual for his playoff odds that sees the Bruins and Avalanche in the top two spots.
Which division do you think can win it all? Let us know in the comments below or on Twitter @wincolumnCGY.